Thursday, February 11, 2016


  Anne Rolfe

13 months since I hugged you last. 

13 months since I've had a lengthy conversation with you. 

13 months since I've enjoyed your physical presence. 

13that special number you send as a sign of your love and eternity. 

13 months and I'm learning that turning the calendar page of your first anniversary does not necessarily turn the emotional page. My healing journey presents me with a crossroadoffering up a choice that will lead me out of darkness into the light. What is unexpected is the chasm that must be crossed first in order to continue. There is no bridge for easy access. Is there another starting point? Perhaps. However, I've come this far and I've decided I'm going to take a leap of faith and trust that grief knows the way. Choosing to continue healing.

13 months and my Facebook cover photo popped up in my news feed this morning along with the comment I first wrote when posted in January 2015:


"Blessed for both my boys/men. Matthew you were a gift. You taught us so much about love, loyalty and the value of special bonds with family. I am in awe of how many lives were touched by your spirit. Jason you were a great role model for your brother. You were best friends . . . the one wish Dad and I had for you two. What love, friendship, memories. Let those carry us through our grief. You are my beautiful, beautiful boys."

13 months and I feel a strong need to add an addendum of sorts to that year old comment as time passing has afforded me a different perspective: 

"It's been over 13 months since that dreadful day we realized that beautiful smile was to become memorialized in photos. In rereading what I wrote soon after Matthew's passing, I notice how often  I used the past tense in my comment. A year of mourning,  a year of better understanding grief I would like to change all the "were(s)" to "are(s)". The one great lesson I have learned this past year is that Love lives in the present, it never dies.  Death is for the physical body and  a gentle transition for the soul. Matthew's love is alive as ever in my heart. I've learned to carry him with me, intertwining his life with mine in a way that transforms me for the better. As much as my heart expands daily with love and gratitude for my remaining beautiful family, seeing Matty's smile in a photo reminds me that longing sits right beside love and gratitude and that is OK. Thank you for visiting a past memory with me." Choosing to revisit and revise beliefs as needed.

13 months and I'm reflecting on the parts of your life that I admire and would like to weave into the fabric of mine. You carried and held onto the child within—your inner child for the whole of your life. The child that often gets forgotten as we age. The child that lives in innocence without fear of complications. The child that lives with wonder and joy. The child that is playful, fully immersed in the part of life that happens when we have no worries. We called this Matty's World and I'm thinking I'd like to visit for an extended stay. Is this what allowed you to live in the present moment when not weighted down with the unrelenting demands of your family business? The present moment, where joy lives, leaving all other remnants of the day purged. The gift of the present moment is what you gave to Addy & Bear. Happy lives with babies & toddlers. You possessed the ability to center your focus on their little beings. Addy holds tight to the present moments you spent with her, memories made and solidified in the heart and mind of a two year old now turned three. You applied that same focus, showered an abundance of nurturing care on your babies in other times as well. You were present. It wasn't just in happy times; the sad and the needy when they had ear infections, colds or tummy aches held your attention as well. I choose to spend time in Matty's World—in the present, creating new memories. Choosing to find happiness.

13 months is as good a time or perhaps better than any to launch the discovery of Mom V.2.0. I can't tell you who I'm growing into but I promise to introduce you when I find her. Choosing to find out who I am with you living in my heart instead of down the road and around the corner.

13 months and the words continue to flowcontinue to speak to me and provide comfort. I'm undertaking new projects. I'm enjoying my revitalized creative side and seeing the colors in my rainbow. I am choosing to  declare 2016 to be the 'Year of Art & Story'. I'm learning how to incorporate art into journaling. I want to add to the words when telling your story for Addy & Bear in a format relatable to them now. Choosing to keep your legacy alive.

13 months and I continue to be startled by moments of disbelief when your death seems surreal.  Triggered by landscapes, memories, thin air. Wondering if maybe this is what it feels like for the soul's existence in no time no spacewhen in a flash too small to be measured by the physical realities of time in our world, I am deluged with feelings ranging a span of extreme elation to the depths of sadnessuntil reality refocuses my thought. Grief's G Force to the mind and body. Startled yet not set backa healing choice.

13 months and I'm inviting you on this journey. Not to rescue or save me but to guide me and create with me. Maybe to change the air currents a bit if my leap of faith carries me in a direction off the path that may prove a bit more difficult than need be. Choosing to give life to new interests.

13 months and I see my relationship with you in spirit flourish. Choosing to believe that lovea forever thing ensures that I can say goodbye in a breath and hello in the next and you continue to be the Love that is the energy of Matthew. No body but such a beautiful soul.

A Prayer Matthew
As we enter our second year of missing you, please continue to soar high, capture wisdom, fly beneath the veil and make a deposit into our hearts. Direct our minds away from ego. Envelop us in kindness, respect, love and gratitude so that we may embrace these virtues and share in kind. Guide our souls until we meethome again.

Love you forever and always